I like to have a workout routine that doesn’t require me going into a gym every time I want to do it, so I combined some great techniques I learned through my swim team and through some experiementing and research to get a great workout that doesn’t take much time or equipment to accomplish. It has helped me stay in shape over the past few years, so I think you should try some of it out! Here’s what I do about four or five times a week.
1.) The Push-Up
This has been the most well known simple workout for decades, and it’s for a good reason. The Push-Up doesn’t just work out your biceps or arms, it forces you to concentrate on nearly your entire body. You have to tighten your shoulders, abs, butt, legs, and arms. In order to do a correct push-up, lay flat on the ground. You will notice you are in resemblance of a plank of wood. Make sure you keep this absolute stiffness when doing the exercise. Put your hands on your sides, evenly placed so that your elbows make a 90 degree angle. Keep your hands in line with your chest muscles. As you push up, tighten your whole body. You want to take around one second to push up, but bring yourself down slowly, taking 2-4 seconds to go back down. DO NOT RELAX ON THE GROUND. Do as many of these as you can until your muscles completely give out. Then take a one or two minute break, and complete three sets. If you do these 4 times a week, you WILL see results in your legs, chest, arms, and abs. I also suggest varying the distance your hands are from your chest to work different chest muscles.
This is an ab exercise I started doing as a result of combining some of my favorites from swim team. Let me tell you from experience this really works, works fast, and produces results. It does not come easy though, and is one of the more difficult ab exercises I have done.
Lay flat on your back, cross your arms over your chest, and SLOWLY lift your shoulders off the ground. You DO NOT NEED TO SIT UP. Just make sure you keep your abs tightened throughout the exercise. Do this very very slowly, but go up faster than you go down. Take about 2 seconds to sit up, and 4-5 to sit down. Do 15 of these for one set, and complete 3-5 sets
Lay flat on your back, cross your arms over your chest, and lift your legs off the ground at a 45 degree angle. Do the same as the exercise for beginners, slowly lifting your shoulders off the ground. Do this slowly and always concentrate on keeping your ab muscles flexed and tightened. Do not rest on the ground. Do 15 of these for one set and complete 3 sets.
Lay flat on your back, lift your legs off the ground at a 45 degree angle, and point your fingers toward your toes. Lift your shoulders off the ground very slowly, and simultaneously lift your legs up, trying to grab your toes. You do not need to sit all the way up, just crunch up as far as you can go. Make sure not to relax until you complete 15, and do not go fast. Complete 3 sets.
3.) Full Extension Pull-Ups
Pull-ups work are an awesome work out. They are tough, and work your back, triceps, biceps, and your chest all at once. They mostly focus on your back though, and make you look great. They are also great for every day activities, and build really useable strength and tone.
Hang from any bar, it doesn’t have to be a store bought pull up bar. I use the playground at a nearby park. Make sure your arms are spread wide, not hanging straight. Keep your hands facing forward, NOT in a chin-up position. Hang completely limp, and pull yourself up above the bar without swinging to gain momentum. Bring yourself all the way down to full arm extension. Do as many of these as you can WITHOUT using extra momentum, take a 2-3 minute break and complete three sets. You will probably have to go down in reps with each set, but make sure not to cheat because than you are just using false pretenses in your workout. You can see in this video what a full extension is, but this guy isn’t really doing them correctly. Make sure not to move or swing your body like he does at all. Go slow.
Running helps to build your heart, stamina, breathing, overall health, and to quickly burn unnecessary fat and make your tone look great. Start out with however much you think you can do: A mile or five. Just make sure you run at least three times a week, and always try to cut time on your distance and increase distance. If you have knee problems, run on the balls of your feet NOT the heels. If that sill doesn’t work, you can try other cardio-vascular exercises like swimming which are great for your whole body as well.
Make sure to keep at it, and increase your reps/sets whenever possible. Put on motivational music, and DO IT. I believe in you!
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